Committees and Commissions

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The City of Palm Desert offers a great way to participate in City government – serve on a Committee or Commission. To get started, simply browse the descriptions below, download an application or contact us for more information. Here is a list of current committee and commission members and their terms: Committee Commission Roster & Terms.

Architectural Review Commission
Reviews the building design and landscaping of all commercial and multiple dwellings to assure compatibility with the City's long-range objectives of being a community of quality, broad vistas, and taste. As of May 2012, also reviews and makes recommendations for the landscape elements of any given project, assuming responsibilities formerly performed by the Landscape Beautification Committee.  Architectural Review Commission Meets the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 12:30 PM (Development Services Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Art In Public Places Commission

The commission is responsible for the City’s public art program, including the placement of selected sculptures throughout the community. Members educate the community about visual art and jury Community Gallery exhibits and the Artist Registry, among other responsibilities. Meetings are held on the second Wednesday of every month at 9 a.m.  (Community Services Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Audit, Investment & Finance Committee

The Committee reviews and assists with the decision making process for investments and deposits of City funds. Meets on the fourth Tuesday of the month at 10 a.m. (North Wing Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Building Board of Appeals

Meets on an as-needed basis to hear appeals regarding interpretation of the Uniform Building Code and condemnation and abatement of dangerous structures. May ratify alternate materials and methods of construction that are not specifically recognized in the Uniform Building Code. (Community Services Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Citizens Advisory Committee for Project Area No. 4
Provided input to the Redevelopment Agency Board on matters directly related to the development or redevelopment of commercial, industrial, and public uses in Project Area No. 4. Membership reserved for residents of the Project Area, which is bounded by Country Club Drive, Washington Street, Fred Waring Drive, and El Dorado Drive. Due to the Palm Desert Redevelopment Agency's dissolution effective February 1, 2012, in accordance with legislation ABX1 26, future meetings, if necessary, will be scheduled on an as-needed basis. (Administrative Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Citizens’ Sustainability Committee
In February 2010, the Palm Desert City Council approved the City’s Environmental Sustainability Plan and Greenhouse Gas Inventory to help ensure that the City’s resources continue to be conserved and managed effectively. The Citizens’ Sustainability Committee is composed of industry professionals that review proposals, offer comment, and help develop appropriate policies and actions to meet the plans goals. This Committee will evaluate the changing needs and future demographic trends regarding sustainability that the City of Palm Desert may anticipate in the following six resource areas: the Built Environment, Energy Management, Materials Management, Regional Air Quality, Transportation Resources, and Water Management.  Meetings held quarterly.
Agendas and Minutes

Cove Commission
In a unique arrangement, the cities of Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, and Indian Wells formed the “Cove Communities Services Commission” in 1981. At the time, no precedent was set for such a multi-city arrangement; however, a spirit of cooperation and ingenuity existed and ultimately prevailed. The Cove Communities Services Commission is comprised of six elected city council members, two from each participating city. Meetings are hosted and staffed by one of the cities for one year, with the terms rotating at the end of the fiscal year. In addition to fire/paramedic services, the Cove Commission is also actively involved in a variety of other programs that affect all three cities, including the Joslyn Center, Children’s Discovery Museum of the Desert, and general law enforcement issues. Residents are encouraged to attend the quarterly meetings. 
Agendas and Minutes

Cultural Resources Preservation Committee
Created as part of the City's Historic Preservation Ordinance for the purpose of preserving areas and specific buildings within the City that reflect elements of its cultural, social, economic, political, architectural, and archaeological history. The Committee considers Palm Desert sites that provide a significant link to the City's 40+ year history, as well as the community's history, which dates back more than 50 years. Meets the last Tuesday of the month at 9 a.m. (Administrative Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

El Paseo Business Improvement District
The committee was established to promote El Paseo as a world class, pedestrian friendly, and upscale retail oriented destination. The Board of Directors represents the interests of its members within the district boundaries. These interests include, but are not limited to, advertising, promotion, street beautification, parking, tourism, and other activities promoting the businesses in the area. Meetings are held on the third Thursday of each month at 8:00 a.m. (North Wing Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Financing Authority
The Financing Authority was formed in 1989 under a Joint Powers Exercise of Powers Agreement between the City and the Redevelopment Agency for the purpose of providing financing for public projects The Authority has the ability to issue bonds with a great deal of flexibility with respect to the structuring of the bond issues. The Authority can issue bonds for, or buy bonds from, the City and the Agency for their projects. Palm Desert's City Council serves as the Board of the Palm Desert Financing Authority; the Mayor serves as President of the Board, and the Mayor Pro Tem serves as the Vice President. Meetings are held as needed.
Agendas and Minutes

Hotel & Signature Events Committee
Established in early 2014 to advise City Council on tourism, hospitality trends and/or programs related to the economic development and stability of tourism and hospitality in Palm Desert, to assist, retain, and expand these businesses.  Membership consists of:  2-Hotel General Managers with over 100 rooms, 2-Hotel General Managers with less than 100 rooms, 1-Representative from the Convention & Visitors Bureau, 2-Councilmembers.  Meetings held bimonthly on the first Wednesday at 4:00 p.m. (North Wing Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Housing Authority
The Housing Authority was created to preserve and improve the community's existing older neighborhoods and provide decent, safe, and sanitary housing for families of very low, low, and moderate incomes. Housing programs include both for-sale and multi-family residential units. Currently, over 1,000 rental units are operated by the Authority. There are also several home improvement programs available to homeowners, providing grants and low-interest loans to owner-occupant residents within the City of Palm Desert. The Palm Desert City Council serves as the Board of the Palm Desert Housing Authority, with the Mayor and Mayor Pro Tem serving as Chair and Vice Chair, respectively. Meets on an as-needed basis.
Agendas and Minutes

Housing Commission

Provides input to the City Council and Housing Authority Board on housing policy and procedures; housing proposals, programs, and strategies; and reviews and makes recommendations on proposed affordable housing developments. Meets on the second Wednesday of the month at 3:30 p.m. (North Wing Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Landscape Beautification Committee
As of May 2012, the responsibilities of this Committee were assumed by the City's Architectural Review Commission; from this point forward, please refer to that schedule of agendas and minutes for information.  Reviewed and made recommendations to City Council, Commissions, staff, developers, property owners, engineering and design professionals, as well as, when requested, approves of municipal and private-project landscape designs. The Committee also provides a forum for the review and recommendation of landscape-related issues to the City Council generally.
Agendas and Minutes

Library Promotion Committee
Recommends programs and policies which will enhance the usefulness of the public library to the residents of Palm Desert. Meetings held monthly on the third Wednesday at 3 p.m. (Administrative Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Marketing Committee
The Marketing Committee evaluates the City's annual marketing and media plans, participates in the creation of an annual marketing budget, including review of all print and electronic media advertising and collateral materials, and makes recommendations for special events requesting financial support from the City. Membership consists of nine representatives from the following segments of Palm Desert's business community: 1-large hotel, 1-small hotel/motel, 1-large retailer, 1-small retailer, 1-shopping center, 1- restaurant, 1-performing arts, and 2-tourism advocates. Meetings are held quarterly on the first Tuesday of the month at 3 p.m. (March, June, September, December) (Administrative Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Oversight Board of the Successor Agency to the Palm Desert Redevelopment Agency
Pursuant to legislation ABX1 26 effective February 1, 2012, the Successor Agency to the Palm Desert Redevelopment Agency shall have an Oversight Board composed of seven members: 1) One member appointed by the County Board of Supervisors; 2) one member appointed by the Mayor for the City that formed the Redevelopment Agency; 3) one member appointed by the largest special district, by property tax share, with territory in the territorial jurisdiction of the former redevelopment agency, which is of the type of special district eligible to receive property tax revenues; 4) one member appointed by the County Superintendent of Education; 5) one member appointed by the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges; 6) one member of the public appointed by the County Board of Supervisors; 7) one member representing the employees of the former redevelopment agency appointed by the Mayor or Chair of the Board of Supervisors, as the case may be, from the recognized employee organization representing the largest number of former redevelopment agency employees employed by the successor agency at that time. The Oversight Board shall approve actions taken by the Successor Agency to the Palm Desert Redevelopment Agency, including, but not limited to, payment of Successor Agency obligations, refunding of outstanding bonds or other debt of the former Redevelopment Agency, merging of project areas, and disposition of all assets and properties of the former redevelopment agency.  Meetings are scheduled for the first Monday of the month at 1:30 p.m., Administrative Conference Room. 
Agendas and Minutes

Parks & Recreation Commission
Reviews all recreational related concerns of the City and recommends policies for its recreational areas. Meets on the first Tuesday of the month at 8:30 a.m. (Administrative Services Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Planning Commission
Reviews all land use applications and recommends to the City Council long-range policies and objectives as they relate to Palm Desert's socioeconomic concerns. This includes periodic review and revision of the City’s General Plan, recommendations on specific plans to carry out General Plan objectives, as well as drafts of regulations required to execute the General Plan; advising the City Council in connection to administration of the State Map Act and the California Environmental Quality Act; and periodic review of the City’s capital improvement program. Meets the first and third Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. (City Council Chamber).
Planning Commission Information Center
Agendas and Minutes

Public Safety Commission

Responsible for providing a public forum to consider law enforcement and comprehensive public safety matters and to make recommendations to the City Council regarding those matters. Meetings held the second Wednesday of the month at 3:30 p.m. (Administrative Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes

Redevelopment Agency

The Palm Desert Redevelopment Agency was eliminated effective February 1, 2012, pursuant to legislation ABX1 26. Formerly, Palm Desert’s Redevelopment Agency was one of the most active in the State and consisted of four project areas totaling approximately 11,964 acres with objectives of revitalizing and improving public infrastructure, economic development, affordable housing, and neighborhood preservation. Some of its projects included Civic Center Park, Desert Willow Golf Resort, and parking facilities at The Gardens on El Paseo, Westfield Palm Desert, and the JFK Well Care Clinic. Additionally, 200 acres of property was dedicated to California State University, San Bernardino, for a $35 million, four-year campus for residents of the Coachella Valley. See Successor Agency to the Palm Desert Redevelopment Agency entry for activity since February 1, 2012.
Agendas and Minutes

Rent Review Commission

Meets on an as-needed basis to adjudicate the City's mobile home rent control ordinance which was adopted in 1984. The Commission receives testimony and renders fair and impartial decisions as they relate to this ordinance (City Council Chamber).
Agendas and Minutes

Successor Agency to the Palm Desert Redevelopment Agency
The Palm Desert Redevelopment Agency was a redevelopment agency in the City of Palm Desert, created in 1974 pursuant to Community Redevelopment Law. Legislation ABX1 26 was signed by the Governor of California on June 29, 2011, making certain changes to Redevelopment Law. On December 29, 2011, the California Supreme Court ruled on a lawsuit over ABX1 26, upholding its provisions, and redevelopment agencies in the State were all dissolved as of February 1, 2012. The legislation that eliminated redevelopment agencies required a Successor Agency to take over assets of the former redevelopment agency and begin promptly winding down its affairs, including disposition of all assets and liabilities within five years. On February 9, 2012, the Palm Desert City Council elected to serve as the governing body for the Successor Agency to the Palm Desert Redevelopment Agency, with the Mayor and Mayor Pro-Tempore serving as Chair and Vice Chair, respectively. Regular Meetings are held the second and fourth Thursdays of the month, with Closed Session conducted at 3:00 p.m., and the Regular Session and Public Hearings held at 4:00 p.m.
Agendas and Minutes

Youth Committee
The Committee was established in early 2002 to provide the City Council with input on issues of interest and concern to the City's youth, including recreational facilities and programs, transportation, public safety programs, regional concerns, local legislation, advertising and promotion, cultural outreach, a wide variety of special events, historical preservation, educational facility and program needs, environmental issues, anti-drug and smoking programs, etc. The Youth Committee is comprised of youth ages 13-18 who reside or attend school within Palm Desert. Meetings held the first Monday of the month at 6 p.m.(Administrative Conference Room).
Agendas and Minutes